Copyright 2017 John A Lewis
All images are © John A Lewis
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Having completed my degree in Photography in 2017 and been Chairman of Daventry Photographic Society for 10 years, I wanted to branch out and visit other clubs in order to develop my own image analytical and critique skills by providing judging services to other clubs.
I have been listed in the MCPF/PAGB HANDBOOK since 2014 and have completed judging visits to over 25 different clubs in the Midlands area. Judging is a very difficult task which I take very seriously. I believe offering a consistent and quality critique of each and every image within the time constraints of a typical ‘competition evening’ is what entrants expect.
I feel that it should be a meaningful learning experience for entrants and they should feel that their efforts are rewarded with sensible and constructive comments which will help them to develop as a photographer. Entrants should see any comments (positive and negative) as fair and reasonable and see them as helpful and instructive.
I aim to avoid clichés such as ‘well seen’, or an over-emphasis on cropping. I will talk to the image and try my best to engage with the club members. I try to be objective and leave any biases at home.
We should not take these competitions too seriously and a little humour can go a long way to making the competition an enjoyable and worthwhile experience, both for the novice and experienced photographer.
“Just a quick word to say how much we, as a club, enjoyed your company last night. I think that it was an evening where everyone got something from it. Those who won, now know why they had won, and those who didn't, now know why they didn't! They also now have an idea of what to aim for, or what to put right in the next competition... thanks to your thorough and empathetic analysis of each image”
Bedworth & Exhall Camera Club
“Just a short note to thank you again for the enjoyable evening you gave us when you judged Round One of our Merit Competitions on 24th September. Your comments on our images where both entertaining and instructive and, I'm sure, appreciated by our members”.
Dunchurch Photographic Society
“I particularly thank you for your time and effort, for without people like yourselves giving up your time to share knowledge, camera clubs would be less attractive. Several of us visit the local pub afterwards and the conversation centred around the competition, everyone mentioned how much they enjoyed it and again I thank you because I get a pat on the back when the judge is liked and the result is universally accepted as correct, ( we do get times when some disagree) So well done for an excellent job.”
Duston Camera Club